Pakistan: Member organisation in Pakistan welcomes elevation of Archbishop who protects minorities to Cardinal


from the National (Catholic) Commission for Justice and Peace

10/7/18 - On June 28, 2018, His Grace Archbishop Joseph Coutts was elevated as the Cardinal in Pakistan at a consistory that took place in the Vatican. His Eminence Cardinal Joseph Coutts is the second Cardinal from Pakistan after Cardinal Joseph Cordeiro passed away in 1994. The Archbishops and Bishops along with several clergy members and priests particularly from Pakistan participated in the official ceremony.

On May 20th 2018, the Holy Father, His Holiness Pope Francis made the announcement during the Pentecost celebrations. After the announcement various politicians from different faith based backgrounds, civil society members, media personnel and community leaders congratulated His Eminence for this honor. They said that Cardinal Coutts is a tireless promoter of inter-religious dialogue, attentive to both the issues of human rights and the misuse of the discriminatory laws.

The National Commission for Justice and Peace is delighted and congratulates His Eminence Cardinal Joseph Coutts for this great honor. In a joint statement His Grace Archbishop Dr. Joseph Arshad, Chairperson NCJP, Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Yousaf (Mani), National Director and Mr. Cecil Shane Chaudhry, Executive Director NCJP stated, “His Eminence is a great promoter of harmony and he has tirelessly campaigned against Pakistan's discriminatory laws for decades. He believes that these laws are too easily manipulated for personal attacks or to target religious minorities. During his time in Karachi and Faisalabad, he has established multiple forums and networks for inter-religious dialogue between Muslims and Christians, striving for acceptance by the general population and increased understanding on the part of political and religious leaders”.

Rev. Fr. Emmanuel Yousaf (Mani) stated that the appointment of Cardinal Joseph Coutts expresses the universality of the Church and merciful love of God to all men and women on earth. He is a leader who has lived through the different and tormented phases of the Pakistani history. He has been instrumental for the growth of the Catholic community in Pakistan. Moreover Cardinal Coutts is well informed on the issues and circumstances faced by the Christian community since the creation of the country.

His Grace Archbishop Dr. Joseph Arshad, Archbishop of Islamabad/Rawalpindi, President, Pakistan Catholic Bishops' Conference and Chairperson, National Commission for Justice and Peace congratulated His Eminence Cardinal Joseph Coutts. He stated that Cardinal Coutts has extensive knowledge of the crucial points regarding human rights in Pakistan. In addition, he said that presently Cardinal Coutts is a strong voice for minorities in Pakistan. Moreover he is a very humble, simple and courageous person. The Catholic community along with all Christians in Pakistan are grateful to His Holiness, Pope Francis for this honor bestowed upon our people and the nation and prayed for Cardinal Coutts that may the Lord guide and bless him in all his important responsibilities.

National Commission for Justice and Peace, Pakistan, Archbishop Joseph Coutts, Cardinal, Vatican